Saturday, March 24, 2007

SUPER REAL NOTES - Sucky Wizard World LA wrap up!

Ahh, the title says it all...
Here we are almost a week since it ended, and I'm just able to update how the 2007 Wizard World Los Angles convention went.
First off, the show itself was fairly well organized, I say "fairly" because, well, aside from having what seemed like an improved guest list (both creators, and celebrities), the show was down in attendance (despite the numbers Wizard reports, which were tied to *ahem* Captain America #25 variants), and once again competed with heavy traffic at the LA convention center.
Last year WWLA was on the same day as the LA Marathon, which passed directly in front of the convention center, this year, the last day of the show, Sunday, saw the hugely attended "Dub" car show in the neighboring hall that made any approach to the venue almost completely inaccessible, even though the crowd for the comic show was minuscule in comparison.
Long Beach, the home the first two years (I first exhibited the second year, 2005), was at least the only show in town, and had a much much better location for after hours activity (and everyone I've ever heard talk of the Long Beach shows, prefered that location as well).
So yes, this was my third year doing the show, and it's always been marginal at best attendance wise, but I've always done real well despite that, till this time anyways.

Oh well, enough about the show, on to the good news...

The good news was I got to hang out with my buddy Javier Hernandez, who's based out of the LA area so I don't get to see him too often, but we had neighboring tables at the show, and when he wasn't busy with his El Muerto movie premiere (yes, he's big time :)), we got to go out and explore the town.

On Friday night we, along with his lovely girlfriend Bernyce, headed out to the Meltdown Comics after party, grabbing dinner across the street at a great Indian food place.
Unfortunately, I'd ordered sake for the first time (more on that later), and (prior to imbibing the Asian intoxicant) spilled the fish platter juices all down my shirt! Ahhh, I'm not the most coordinated of souls it's true.
The dinner was good though, great Pad Thai, and the saki interesting.
I didn't get too messed up on it or anything, but again, more on that later...

For the time being it was across Sunset Blvd to the oasis of comics known as Meltdown. I'd previously visited the shop on my first trek to the LaLa-Land show... this time they had a party in the back room, complete with open bar, live music, live art, and DJ.
Yes, that's saki+open bar folks... look out!
So, after getting acquainted and seeing my friend and issue 3 variant cover artist Felipe Smith (he of Tokyopop manga MBQ fame, who lives just down the street, but could barely be bothered away from the drawing table), it was time to marvel at the wonder of the Melendrez Brothers, a jam/classic rock band, made up entirely of 10 to 14 year-olds. I say marvel because these kids could play! 3 of the members were in full on dreads and mashing guitars and drums with the best of them, switching from all out jams to Hendrix and more with style and skill.
After that, Jim Mahfood (SR Special number 1 artist) was up on the live art boards, a very cool performance any comic fan should check out (as Jim and crew put on shows at just about any major show). All now accompanied by a DJ spinning eclectic beats (many on 45's no less!)...
That was the highlight.
Turned out I was up almost 24 hours at that point, and on the way home the saki did a number on my bladder, making for some preempted police exposure in a go at some bushes, a stop at the nearest BK to use the token only restroom, and a downtown alleyway detour to relieve the sharpest urine induced pains of my woeful existence, mere blocks from the hotel.
Curse you saki!! You're the only unknown variable to the evening and had to have brought this upon me (and my unfortunate chauffeur in the the shenanigans, Mr Hernandez)...

Sooo, Saturday night Jav-Man had his big movie premiere in San Diego at the Latino Film Festival, and I kicked it back at the hotel room after the show, crashing and sleeping before 9pm...

After being fully rested it was on to the Dub induced trauma of getting into the show Sunday AM, and after the deadest day at any con since the infamous Las Vegas show (the con that answered the question, "What happens if you through a large show, and no one attends?"), Jav and I headed to East LA for some great Mexican food (though I forget the name of the place La Ta-something).

On the way back to the hotel we stopped off at Little Tokyo for drinks and sharing sketchbooks, a tradition I'm afraid we won't be able to continue, as I don't see it being viable to return to another Wizard LA show next year...

But, it was good times, despite the anemic attendance at the show.
Wondercon kicks WWLA's ass up an down the Cali coast I tell you!

Looks like Meltdown just put up a slide show of the events, it's starts off with all the works from the gallery showing (forgot to mention that part) and then shows some of the festivities...


HCNoel said...

Man, sorry about the turnout at the con. Some of these cons are a gamble. I'm going to ease my nervousness about Pittsburgh with rum.
Sounds like you had a lot of fun out on the town though. Save some fun for PA!

Jason Martin said...

Yeah man, PA is gonna be a BLAST!

I keep findin more an more people that are goin...

I see con weekends as a big party, they're awesome, a whole convention filled with comics, and creators?!?
With fans of the book sayin hi, buying sketches and books?!!
Meeting new people?!?
Goin out after shows!?!

I prefer the whiskey myself ;)

See ya soon man!